Canadians are living longer on average than they did a decade ago, with men enjoying the strongest gains and closing the gap on women in life expectancy.
Life expectancy at birth hit 80.7 years between 2005 and 2007, according to a report released Tuesday from Statistics Canada, up from an average of 80.5 between 2004 and 2006 and 78.4 a decade earlier.
Continuing an ongoing trend, men are closing the gap on women, with their life expectancy at birth increasing by 2.9 years to 78.3 between 2005 and 2007, compared to an increase of 1.8 years to 83.0 for women.
Life expectancy for seniors over age 65 has also been rising. On average, a 65-year-old man would look forward to 18.1 more years of life in 2005-2007, up 2.0 years from a decade earlier, while a 65-year-old woman could expect to live an additional 21.3 years, an increase of 1.3 years.
Gains in life expectancy among seniors over the last 10 years account for 70 per cent of the increase in life expectancy at birth, the statistical agency says.
At the same time, the number of deaths in Canada in 2007 saw their highest increase since 1993, continuing a long-term trend that’s the result of a growing and aging population. In 2007, 235,217 people died in this country, up 7,138 or 3.1 per cent from 2006.